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Full text of "NightRider"

330

Company, What we've got to do is keep the .Association
together. The companies can't last for ever without tobacco.
They can't keep those soldiers here for ever. If they build
warehouses, they've got to put something in them."

" We don't control near half the crop," Mr, Munn objected.

"Well, tobacco comes out of plant beds/' Doctor Mac-
Donald retorted, "don't it?"

Mr. Munn looked at him. " We did it before," he said. " I
reckon we can do it again."

" I reckon we can," Doctor MacDonald agreed, and grin-
ning, his lips curled back from the long teeth.

Doctor MacDonald was like that. He would give that
easy, soft laugh, like a man looking out on things from the
confidence of his own inner, secret world. Because he was
confident and easy in that inner world, he was easy and
confident at whatever he set his hand to in the outer world.
He would lift his arm in a slow, half-lazy motion to knock
out a pipe or to lay his hand on his wife's shoulder, and you
could see, below the too-short sleeve of his coat, the tendons
slip slickly and strongly, like a piston in oil, beneath the
brown skin of his wrist, the slowness, somehow, suggesting
the potentiality of speed. Or he would swing himself lankily
to his saddle, and turning to speak, would gather the reins
as in idleness; but the restive horse would become still as a
post A handful of parched corn, he had said. That was
what he had had, down in Mexico, and moving fast. But it
had not been the handful of parched corn that sustained him,
Mr. Munn somehow felt; not that, for he had been sustained
by something else, a nourishment within himself.

Doctor MacDonald was right, Mr. Munn admitted to him-
self. With luck it could be done, it was possible. If people
were like Doctor MacDonald. He wondered how much he
himself was Eke Doctor MacDonald. He, he himself, could
take a lot, he was sure. He had taken a lot already. The
Association, that was what was left. If they could win.
If they didn't win. He did not think beyond that except to
think what could there be, for him, beyond that. The